With the new Star Wars film coming out one finds it hard not to see promotional material such as trailers and posters.
As a result of that I saw the image of the of the death trooper or shadow trooper holding a small rag doll of a stormtrooper. This image caught my imagination and I decided I wanted to see if I could make one.
I have not really used clay to sculpt something before so this is a bit of a learning curve for me.
In this instructable I show you how i went about making my little stormtrooper doll.
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Step 1: Tools and Materials.
tooth picks and skewer.
Air dry clay.
Step 2: Planning.
first thing to do in any project is to do research.
Looking on the internet there was ONE picture of this little dude. there were some images of the toy version that comes with the scale model of the shadow trooper, i chose to just base my little dude of this one image.
I found the highest resolution I could on Google.
When I had that image I took it into Adobe Illustrator to scale it up to a size i thought looked correct. I used the width of his thumb to guess the scale.
Once it was scaled I drew round the image to make a rough plan to build my Little Stormtrooper doll.
Step 3: Sculpting the Head and Torso.
Using the reference images and a printed version of my plans, I sculpted the Head using my hands and a knife and some tooth picks.
Once the main head shape had been made I used some water and my finger to smooth the marks made
by my hands and fingers when I was sculpting. I made a hole in the bottom of the head using the large tooth pick and skewer, this will be used to attach the elastic for the neck join.
I made the body in much the same way, starting with a large block of clay at the thickness I wanted the body to be i carved away to match the shape of the printed plans.
Using the large skewers I poked a hole through the shoulder area and the hip joint area. These holes will be used for the elastic to be threaded through to hold the doll together.
In the top of the body (neck area) I used the skewer to create a hole that is deep enough and in the correct place to meet the hole that goes through the body for the shoulders. This upside down T will be how the head is held into the torso and still have some movement.
Step 4: Sculting the Arms, Legs, Feet and Hands.
I Decided that i would make the arms and legs out of the same material as the head and body to give it the same aesthetic finish. the legs could have been made from wooden dowel with a hole drilled through them , but it would look better and match the rest of the doll if everything was made from the same material.
I rolled the clay into a long sausage, cut the sausage to match the length of the lower arms and leg sections on the plans. Using the skewer to make a hole through the arm and leg sections to thread the elastic through it.
The upper leg and arms were made the same way as the lower arm and leg sections, but were then placed over the plan and had the top section cut off at an angle. These angles will help the arms and legs sit against the body better, and more like a human and more like the doll in the reference pictures.
The hands and feet were sculpted to match the plan and photos. these also had holes poked through for the elastic.
Step 5: Painting the Parts.
After all the clay parts dried and set solid (it took quite a while with the bigger thicker parts like the torso and head) i gave everything a light sand to smooth off all the marks from my fingers.
Once all the parts had been sanded i gave all the parts that are to be white a coat of white acrylic paint. (head, body, upper arms and legs and the lower arms and legs.)
The hands and feet got a coat of black acrylic paint.
The white parts got a sand and second coat of white paint, the black parts did not as the black paint covers the parts much more effectively.
the white parts got a wash with very watered down black paint. this is to weather the parts and make them look old and worn and dirty.
The black parts were given a light sand on the edges to make it look like the black paint has worn away due to age and use (play)
Step 6: Stringing the Dolls Legs.
I tied a knot at one end of the elastic and threaded it through the bottom of the foot and lower leg and upper leg.
Then the elastic goes through the hole through the hips of the torso and then back down through the tops of the upper leg, lower leg and the second foot.
I then pulled the elastic tight and tied a second knot in it to hold both legs onto the torso tight. This bit was a process of trial and error, I did the second knot a few times as the first time it was too tight and the second time was far too loose, third time lucky. you need it to be loose enough that the legs move and hang freely but not too tight that it holds the parts solidly in place.
Step 7: Stringing the Upper Body.
The upper body was a little harder than the lower body.
I put a loop of elastic down the hole in the neck, the one which goes down to the hole that goes from shoulder to shoulder, this will have a length of elastic going through it from arm to arm which will hold the head onto the body .
The first picture shows the two ends of the loop coming out of the neck. the second image shows that i have pulled the loop out of the neck hole pulling the arm to arm elastic out of the neck hole. (i did this so i could have some space to glue the neck loop into the bottom of the head. In the third image it shows me holding the arm to arm elastic out of the neck while I glue the neck loop into the head
i strung the arms the same way i did the legs. I tied a knot and threaded it into the hand and the bottom arm part then the upper arm, through the body (and through the neck loop) and then into the top of the upper arm and lower arm and hand on the other side, pull the elastic tight enough to hold the head on the neck tightly and pulls the arms in place but doesn't stop them moving and hanging correctly.
Step 8: Finished Stormtrooper Doll From Star Wars Rouge One.
Now you have your finished Stormtrooper Doll you can display him, pop him on your mouse droid or put him with his big friend. Anything you like.
This project was one that I enjoyed doing, I've never done clay sculpting like this but I feel it turned out pretty good.
I started this before seeing the film, I did think that he might play a little bigger part in the film but he is definitely a blink and you will miss him. the promo photos that I used as a reference weren't even in the film, but hey i really like him and he will sit on my shelf and watch over me.
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Thank you for reading.